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Michael Beckel, OpenSecrets: Details on $769Million spent this quarter on Special Interest Groups Bringing YTD Total to $2.44Billion with army of 10,000 Lobbyists

Details on $769Million spent this quarter on Special Interest Groups, bringing YTD total to $2.44Billion with army of 10,000 DC Lobbyists
by Michael Beckel, October 31, 2011
Center for Responsive Politics researcher Sarah Bryner contributed to this report. 


No. 1 spenderpharmaceuticals and health products industry 

During the third quarter of 2010, more than 10,000 individual lobbyists actively worked to advance the interests of their clients and monitored political developments in the nation’s capital. That’s roughly 20 lobbyists for every member of Congress.

These lobbyists were hired by a diverse range of interests — from Silicon Valley to Wall Street, from doctors to defense contractors and from municipal governments to labor unions.

About 90 percent of third-quarter lobbying reports have been processed by the Center for Responsive Politics and that information has been incorporated into the profiles in the lobbying database on

Overall, more than $769 million was spent on lobbying during the third quarter, according to the Center’s preliminary analysis of third-quarter lobbying data. That brings the year-to-date spending on lobbyists to more than $2.44 billion.

Both of these numbers will assuredly increase after the final lobbying reports are processed in the days and weeks ahead.

According to the Center’s preliminary analysis, the health sector; the finance, insurance and real estate sector; the general business sector; the communications and electronics sector; and the energy and natural resources sector were the top spenders during the third quarter.

Drilling even deeper into the data, the preliminary analysis indicates that the pharmaceuticals and health products industry ranks as the No. 1 spender on lobbying during the third quarter out of the more than 100 industries tracked by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Other top industry spenders include the insurance industry, the oil and gas industryelectric utilitiessecurities and investment firmshospitals and nursing homes, the tech industry and theTV, movies and music industry.

According to the Center’s research, among individual organizations that hired lobbyists, theU.S. Chamber of Commerce retained its status as the top dog on K Street — spending $14.4 million between July and September on its federal, state and grassroots lobbying activities. That sum brings its year-to-date lobbying sum to $46.2 million.

Among individual firms hired to carry out lobbying, Patton Boggs reported the largest third-quarter lobbying income, at more than $9.5 million, bringing its year-to-date lobbying income to $27 million. And lobbying powerhouse Akin Gump followed closely behind at more than $9 million during the third quarter — which brought its year-to-date lobbying income to about $26 million.

Stay tuned for more reports and analysis on third-quarter lobbying on OpenSecrets Blog and examine the new numbers for yourself in the lobbying database.


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